Even in this up and down season that the Dallas Cowboys have had throughout 2019, there have still been some very impressive individual efforts worthy of postseason accolades. Yesterday the NFL released the 2020 NFL Pro Bowl rosters and four Dallas Cowboys were selected to go to this year’s all-star game in Orlando, Florida.
Ezekiel Elliott, Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, and Travis Frederick will represent the Dallas Cowboys in this year’s exhibition and each has made a Pro Bowl game before.
For Ezekiel Elliott, the NFL’s fifth leading rusher, this will be his third selection since coming into the NFL in 2016. The one year Elliott didn’t make the Pro Bowl squad was in 2017 when he was suspended for six games for violating the league’s domestic abuse policy. In that season, despite missing six games, Elliott nearly ran for 1,000 yards and still finished in the top 10 in the NFL in rushing. 2019 hasn’t necessarily been Elliott’s best season, but it looks like he’s hitting his stride as the Cowboys push for the NFC East and the playoffs.
Tyron Smith will be making his seventh Pro Bowl appearance in 2019. He’s been just as dominant as ever this season even if he’s been called for more penalties than we’re used to. Several of the holding calls were mostly because Smith was in such a good position that the pass rusher knew he was beat and flopped to draw the call. Tyron Smith continues to be an anchor on the left side of the line and one of the best in the NFL. Per Pro Football Focus, Smith is one of just 11 players to allow one sack or fewer in 2019.
All Pro Right Guard Zack Martin has quietly gone about his business this season without much fanfare. It’s really weird considering his still one of the best guards in all of football. I guess people got bored with his dominance. Martin ranks third in the NFL in Pro Football Focus’ pass blocking efficiency and hasn’t allowed a sack in 2019. He’s one of nine guards who hasn’t allowed a sack this season. Martin will be making his sixth straight Pro Bowl appearance in 2019. He’s been selected every year since his rookie season and this selection shows you just how respected he is in the NFL. Martin has the third highest grade for a guard in the NFL this season. He continues to be a rock in the middle of the offensive line.
In one of the most amazing Dallas Cowboys’ storylines of 2019, Center Travis Frederick not only returned to the football field, but has been an integral part of the success the offense has had this season. After being diagnosed with Guillen-Barre Syndrome during training camp of 2018, the fear was that his NFL career could be over as the disease effects the peripheral nervous system. Getting him back on the field should make him the front runner for the NFL’s Comeback Player of the Year Award. Whether he wins it or not, his return has been huge for the Cowboys. He hasn’t always been the elite All-Pro player we’ve seen in years past, but he’s been really good and like Tyron Smith has only allowed one sack on the season. Frederick will be making his fifth Pro Bowl appearance. The only time he wasn’t selected to the annual all-star game was his rookie season of 2013. Remember, when he was drafted, many draft analysts labeled the selection a reach. He’s been nothing but gold for the Cowboys offense.
While the Pro Bowl doesn’t count for anything in the standings and is generally considered the worst of the four major sports, it still matters to the players. If the Cowboys don’t have more to play for, I’d imagine others are added to this list as some players bow out because they’re playing in the Super Bowl and others because of injury. Hopefully, however, the NFL’s having to find replacements for these four because the Dallas Cowboys are playing in the Super Bowl.
If the Cowboys play like they did on Sunday in their 44-21 beatdown of the Los Angeles Rams, who’s selected to the Pro Bowl may not matter. They’ll have bigger fish to fry.